Kulwinder Rehal is an artist who runs workshops in a variety of specialist schools, and her work with children who suffer with ADHD and Autism has touched the lives of many people all around the UK.
She is also a wickedly good artist, and her latest work is a series of superheroes with a twist: they’re all Indian aunties and uncles.
1. Bulbreen Aunty (Wolverine)
2. The Incredible Hulkwinder (The Hulk)
3. Captain Shanti Devi (Captain America)
4. Sherni-O Auntie
5. Satnam Aunty (Batman)
6. Billo Auntiji (Catwoman)
7. Ishpider Bhen (Spiderman)
8. Dead-Phool Auntiji (Deadpool)
indy100 caught up with Kulwinder to find out more about the project:
You grew up in the UK. As a child who no doubt watched cartoons, what was that experience like?
Growing up, I did not really take notice of the lack of diverse characters in cartoons because children usually do not create racial barriers or consider themselves as 'different' from one another as they are innocent.
It's only the transition from childhood to adulthood that we create an identity of our own and start developing differences, put up boundaries and borders, which to me is utterly upsetting.
What compelled you to start on this project?
When I started my superhero aunties and uncles series, I reminisced about the typical stereotypical surroundings which I grew up in the 80s and wanted to shed light and pay tribute to their struggles, sacrifices and success stories after moving from their homes to UK.
What do you hope to achieve with these cartoons?
I like to stimulate the minds of my audiences by creating thought-provoking pieces which shed light on the 'similarities' of the eastern and western cultures.
This is an act of 'breaking down' stereotypical barriers, allowing the western audience to peep over the fence to get a real insight of the Asian culture.
Being born and brought up in UK and nurtured by traditional desi parents, having gone through the typical struggles of striking a balance between east-meets-west culture, I have finally found peace appreciating both worlds combined!
You can check out more of her artwork, which explores culture and identity, diaspora and womanhood on her Instagram.
All photos courtesy of Kulwinder Rehal